Counter-Strike Gambling Community Takes Another Hit

No more watching Twitch streams of people promoting sites where users gamble Counter-Strike skins.

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Twitch streams featuring Steam gambling sites are no longer allowed, the site has announced.

Steam gambling has become a hot-topic issue recently after it attracted a lawsuit against Valve that alleged it was profiting from a system that allowed Counter-Strike: Global Offensive skins to be gambled through third-party sites. (It was also revealed that YouTube creators were promoting a gambling site they owned without sufficiently disclosing that fact.) After a period of silence, Valve spoke out this week, stating it has "no business relationships with any of these sites."

Piggybacking off of this, Twitch has reiterated that its terms of service don't allow users to "stream content that breaks the terms of service or user agreements of third-parties." It specifically cites Valve's statement, which says the gambling sites in question are using Steam's API in a way that its user agreements don't permit.

"As such, content in which the broadcaster uses or promotes services that violate Valve's stated restrictions is prohibited on Twitch," the streaming site said.

This is another blow for these gambling sites, which are already facing trouble as Valve intends to prevent them from using the OpenID API that allows them to access Steam.

One of Counter-Strike's many skins, via CS: Go Stash
One of Counter-Strike's many skins, via CS: Go Stash

This sort of online gambling may sound like an insignificant thing, but that's hardly the case. A Bloomberg report from April cites research firm Eilers & Krejcik Gaming, which estimates that $2.3 billion in skins were wagered on esports in 2015. A new report suggests the industry could have seen the total value of wagers rise to $7.4 billion this year.

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